Can anyone stop Mikaela Shiffrin?
Sure, she’s the favorite for any Slalom race, but now she is taking over the Giant Slalom and Super-G as well.
Just four weeks into the 2018-19 Alpine World Cup season, she claimed her fifth win in the nine races that have been held, with victories in the Super-G on Saturday and the Parallel Slalom on Sunday.
“I did not expect to win today,” she said of her Super-G win. I just tried to execute the right plan based on what my coaches said, and my skis were perfect and the feeling was good. So it worked out in the end!”
She finished almost 3/10ths ahead of former World Cup overall champ Lara Gut-Behrami of Switzerland, with last season’s Super-G seasonal winner, Tina Weirather (LIE) in third.
In the Parallel Slalom on Sunday, Shiffrin was paired in the final with Slovakia’s Petra Vlhova, Shiffrin’s top challenger in the technical races this season.
“It was a big fight, especially in the final,” Shiffrin said. “I was really going crazy, maybe a little bit too hard. I felt like I was a bit off the course and I could see Petra always on my side going a little bit ahead…and I was thinking ‘Oh no, go faster!’”
She did and edged Vlhova by just 27.22-27.33 in the final.
Only nine of 38 scheduled races have been completed, but Shiffrin has a stunning 689-296 edge in the overall standings on Swiss Michelle Gisin. In the past two seasons, she has secured her overall title with runaway win streaks in Slalom (and some Giant Slalom) races from mid-December to mid-January. That opportunity is coming up again with seven technical races in a row coming up between 21 December and 8 January. Summaries from St. Moritz:
FIS Alpine World Cup
St. Moritz (SUI) ~ 8-9 December 2018
(Full results here)
Women’s Super-G: 1. Mikaela Shiffrin (USA), 1:11.30; 2. Lara Gut-Behrami (SUI), 1:11.58; 3. Tina Weirather (LIE), 1:11.72; 4. Ragnhild Mowinckel (NOR), 1:11.97; 5. Michelle Gisin (SUI), 1:12.06.
Parallel Slalom/Big Final: 1. Shiffrin (USA), 27.22; 2. Petra Vlhova (SVK), 28.33. Small Final: 3. Wendy Holdener (SUI), 27.54; 4. Katharina Liensberger (AUT), 27.80.